You saw where I think the Big 12 sits heading into this season. I asked for your takes, and you gave them -- albeit without much disagreement.
Aaron in Lincoln, Neb., wrote: I'm right with you David. 1. SEC 2. Big XII 3. Big Ten 4. Pac-10 5. ACC 6. Big East
Your colleague Adam Rittenberg (along with all the other bloggers) wants to make the case that the Big Ten has moved ahead of the Big XII. One good bowl season and everybody jumps on the bandwagon. It seems like everyone is being blinded by expansion and tricked into thinking that everyone must want to go to the Big Ten because it's the better football league. The fact is, outside of Ohio State and Penn State, anyone else in the Big Ten would have been no better than 6th in the Big XII last year. Iowa had too many squeakers in the final minutes that they couldn't have pulled off in the Big XII (one point win over Northern Iowa at home, anyone?).Oh, and sorry Ms. Dinich, but the ACC is still a joke. Nothing like a nice, healthy dose of undelivered potential to go with your beautiful coastlines.
TexasSooner in Austin, Texas wrote: The Big 12 is the number 2 conference in the country. The reason: no conference other than the SEC can put up two teams like OU and UT. Period. Now if A&M, Tech, OSU, Nebraska and Missouri can keep getting better, this conference can smack people around. That said, our conference outside of OU needs to start scheduling better out of conference teams.
Sam Stinson wrote:
1) SEC : Who can argue with a legit shot of back to back national champs in the league. Alabama is the chalk with others chasing a length or two behind. As for the others, Florida is Florida and I have hunch that both Auburn, Arkansas and South Carolina will make some noise in the Top 25.
2) Big 12: Oklahoma, Nebraska and Texas will be vying for the top spot in the conference and it won't be the only spot they will be competing for. If Nebraska comes to play October 16th, they will win and be in the drivers seat to make a real run for a BCS bid. As for Oklahoma and Texas, its safe to say both will have a legit shot at a BCS bid too. The middle of the conference will also be strong with A&M, Mizzu, Tech, K-State and maybe even Baylor.
3) ACC: The ACC is setup to be my dark horse conference. Miami and Va Tech will be two strong teams that could set themselves up to make a run for a BCS bowl. To add to my point Florida St, Clemson (even losing Spiller), North Carolina and Georgia Tech seem to be a very strong middle of the pack. Maybe better than the Big 12.
4) Big 10: The Big ten is getting press now but I don't see much of a change in their productivity. Ohio St will be the team to beat but they better watch out when Miami comes to town on Sept 11. Aside from the obvious leader, it is an open race for second. Iowa has the best shot with a weak non-conference and playing the big boys at home. Also Penn St has Alabama on Sept 11.
5/6) Mountain West or Big East.
TTLawUTAlum wrote: Purely football:
1) SEC -- Won the last 4 titles. They are undeniably strong at the top with Bama and Florida. Their mid-section with a faltering LSU, inconsistent Ole Miss, no defense Arkansas, and consistently under-achieving Georgia is not all that impressive. But what makes their mid-section dangerous is they have the potential to beat any other team on any given day, something that can't always be said about similar teams in other conferences.
2) Big 12 -- Texas and OU can walk into any conference and probably compete for if not win it. Nebraska now has the ability and coaching to unseat UT or OU. Middle of the conference is solid, but don't look for any of them to crack to the top 3 strangle-hold.
3) Big 10 -- Ohio State and all the rest.
4) ACC -- very balanced league and decent depth. Great and good teams, but no elite teams.
5) PAC 10 -- No Pete Carroll and turmoil at Oregon = almost no national relevance.
6) Mountain West -- Froth at the top is amazing, but past the top 4, they are abysmal.
7) Big East -- Cincinatti (who proved to be a paper tiger) and all the rest, who are all pretty mediocre (Pitt) to bad (Syracuse).
8) Conference USA -- exciting offenses (SMU, UH, ECU) and no defense (Rice)
9) WAC -- Boise State (talented enough and well coached enough to compete with any elite level team), but the rest are beyond horrible.
10) Sun Belt -- Troy with some decent work and the scrubs.
11) Mid American -- well it's hard to recruit when you're bad AND it's cold.